Small business owners are often in tenuous financial situations. Cash flow, taxes and unexpected expenses can all wreak havoc on the fiscal security of your small business. You don’t have to be an unsuspecting victim, though. Take matters into your own hands with these financial strategies that will keep your head above the tide of unforeseen financial disaster.
Keep Taxes in Check
Payroll taxes are one of the biggest financial responsibilities that small business owners face. By the 14th of each month, someone from your organization has to login to pay those taxes so they arrive in the IRS coffers by the 15th, or else. If you don’t have the money, your business could receive a warning letter or a financial penalty, so you need to plan for that payout ahead of time.
Each payday, have your bookkeeper calculate what you’ll have to pay in taxes for payroll. Put that money aside in a separate account so you won’t overspend and leave yourself short for tax day.
Stay Clear of Loans
There all kinds of short term emergencies in the small business world that can make you think of taking out a loan. Maybe your supplies are running low, or you’re not able to meet payroll. But avoid taking out a loan at all cost. A loan to solve a short term emergency will only cost you more money in the end.
If you have a short term emergency, you’ll probably be able to get through it with some sacrifice. Here are some possible solutions to common short term emergencies:
- Short on payroll: Skip paying yourself for one or two pay periods.
- Can’t pay taxes: Call the IRS and ask for an extension.
- Running out of supplies: Ask for interest-free or low interest credit from the supplier or do without
- Delivery truck breakdown: Pool employees together to make deliveries in their vehicles and reimburse them for fuel.
In short, you’re a clever entrepreneur. There’s no problem too large for you to tackle without resorting to a loan.
If you continually have trouble with finances each month, consider diversifying your business services. Are you great at something creative, such as photography? The newest trend is to send wedding invitations with photographs. You could sell your photography services online. Are you a great writer? You could sell freelance writing services to fellow small business owners who need help with content marketing.
Take Some Courses
If you really want to learn how to be a Jedi with your finances, consider taking some courses. Classwork on bookkeeping, accounting software, and basic tax preparation can really provide enlightening information that will help you succeed in your small business for the rest of your life. Even if you get so big and successful that you no longer have to show up for work everyday and you have a manager to run things, you’ll be better off. You’ll be able to oversee the books and make sure that your business is being run in an appropriate manner. Courses are usually affordable, and are available online as well as at regional campuses.
You have what it takes to take control of your small business finances. It just takes some focus, knowledge and the willingness to face the facts and tackle potential problems right away.